2023 linebacker Raul Aguirre is emerging as one of the best players at his position for the next cycle. NoleGameday caught up with the Fayetteville (GA) - Whitewater standout to get the latest on his recruitment, and to see how his unofficial visit for the Notre Dame game went.
Raul Aguirre is a name that popped up on the Florida State radar earlier this year. The 6-foot-2, 212-pound linebacker moved over to a new school this season which is giving him a chance to play on both sides of the ball.
“The season has started off good at 2-1,” Aguirre said. “I’m at a different school now and I am playing offense this season, too. I’m playing wide receiver and running back. The coaches like how athletic I am and that I can run routes. I’m playing in the slot also. They want me to get my hands on the ball. They even have me playing fullback in short yardage to move the chains. I’m 100% playing linebacker too. I’m working on getting the offensive plays down but it’s been fun.”
Raul said that once September 1 hit his phone was ringing off of the hook. Now that he can communicate with coaches, he is eager to see how his recruiting process continues to evolve.
“Recruiting is flat out getting crazy,” Aguirre said. “Right at 12:01 my phone started going off, from calls to texts. That’s when I knew that this was real. A lot of coaches, LSU, FSU, Virginia Tech, Mississippi State and Notre Dame have been some of the schools I have talked to. There’s plenty more. I’m getting a lot of mail, just a lot of interest. I’m focusing on my junior season and my grades more than anything right now.”
FSU was one of the schools that Aguirre visited this past offseason. While no visit stood out more than the other, he said that he enjoyed his time seeing what schools had to offer in person.
“I went down to Miami and saw them, that’s good because my family is from there,” Aguirre explained. “I went to Georgia and worked out for their coaches and had a good time there. FSU, I liked that one. I really liked the coaches and the atmosphere there. Ole Miss and Arkansas are schools I went to. I had a good time at all of them. They each have different parts that make them what they are so that was interesting to see.”
The Seminoles have stayed in pursuit of the talented linebacker. He visited FSU last weekend for the season opener versus Notre Dame. He came away impressed with what he saw.
“I spoke to coach Marve and coach Norvell about coming up there so we made it happen,” Aguirre said. “I wanted to see how Tallahassee was on gameday. I have to say it surprised me! What a game. It is the craziest game I have been apart of. The community, how they were leading up to the game, seeing the game, and how the fans were, it was awesome. The way that fanbase was is what stuck out. I can see myself in that atmosphere making a play and having that crowd cheer for me. That crowd had me like ‘wow’.”
“I loved the FSU visit,” Aguirre continued. “I like how the linebackers played. I feel coach Marve is doing a good job and that they did very good. I see some things they can work on, but I do really like how coach Marve is off and on the field.”
The versatility and ability to play in space that Raul has is what has helped garner the attention of colleges from all over the country. Right now, he’s staying open to the process while getting his team set-up to make a deep playoff run.
“Open, I am flat-out listening to everyone,” Aguirre said about his recruitment. “I haven’t been too much into it yet because I am so focused on getting into the playoffs and making a deep run. I do know that relationships are number one with me. I do have schools on my mind some and I am communicating with coaches. The coaches that keep those relationships and communication open are who I will consider.”
Aguirre doesn’t have any more visits planned at this time and is “playing it by ear” regarding taking other unofficials.
Stay tuned to Sports Illustrated and NoleGameday as we track Raul’s recruitment and the rest of his junior season.